Amphiphilically Nanostructured Deep Eutectic Solvents

Samila McDonald, Thomas Murphy, Silvia Imberti, Gregory G. Warr, Rob Atkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Citations (Scopus)


Deep eutectic solvents (DESs) are neoteric liquids produced by mixing a high-melting-point salt and a molecular hydrogen-bond donor. Amphiphilic (self-assembled) liquid nanostructure, which is key for many of the useful properties of the related ionic liquid class, has not previously been experimentally demonstrated in DESs. Here we show how amphiphilically nanostructured DESs can be prepared using primary ammonium cations. The bulk structure of alkylammonium bromide (alkyl = ethyl-, propyl-, and butyl) and glycerol DESs at a 1:2 mol ratio is examined using neutron diffraction and empirical potential structure refinement fitting. Analysis reveals cation alkyl chain association, which is the signature of amphiphilic liquid nanostructure, in all systems, which becomes better defined with increasing chain length. The ability to form amphiphilically nanostructured DESs will enable the translation of ionic liquid properties associated with liquid nanostructure to DESs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3922-3927
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2018

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